Welcome to the Coder Dojo Micro-Electronics Page

This is the page formally know as the ‘Raspberry-Pi Page’. Over the previous couple of terms we’ve explored a range of projects using both Raspberry Pi and Arduino microcontrollers. While the loose format allowed the children to explore different aspects of micro electronics through their own projects, with limited helpers and a number of different projects going on at the same time, it was difficult to assign sufficient time to each of the children. Additionally, setting up the Raspberry Pi’s and projects each week took a significant part of the session.

This year, for the first term we’ve therefore simplified the session with aim of ensuring that the children all have a good basic foundation of electronics before moving on to more complicated projects.

Our first project is aimed at building that foundation, ensuring that they have a good knowledge of basic electrical components and the building blocks on which further projects will be based. The project is also designed to encourage collaboration and to get the children working things out for themselves.

Surviving the Zombie Apocalypses – Project 1 – Communication

OK the zombies have taken over, there aren’t many people left and all infrastucture is gone. There is no telephone communication, no internet but small groups of survivors are forming, but they need a way to communicate that won’t attract the attention of the zombies.

The project revolves around establishing simple communication using infrared LEDs and sensors. The group is split into pairs and within each pair one child is the sender and one child is the receiver.

Two simple circuits are required. The circuits introduce the concepts of microcontrollers, ‘Diodes’, resistors and the use of voltage dividers to read values from sensors.

Two different types of diodes are introduced – a Light Emitting Diode (in this case the LED emits invisible infrared light), which is used in the ‘sender’, and a Light Sensitive Diode which is used in the receiver. The properties of a diode (only allowing current to flow in one direction) are discussed.